Wednesday, 13 January 2016

13.1.16 González Byass Tweaks Packaging; Fedejerez Wants End to BIB; Magellan Ship

Viña AB, Nectar, Alfonso and Leonor are getting a facelift. In this smart new presentation the red capsule denotes a dry wine and the black a sweet one, and Tio Pepe appears in gold at the bottom.

“A lie told often enough becomes the truth.” This expression was used by Fedejerez in reference to the BIB Manzanilla producers and their repeated claim to represent Manzanilla. Following the publication of the manifesto signed by the members of the Association of Artisan Bodegas of Sanlúcar “in defence of Manzanilla and the wine producing traditions of Sanlúcar,” in which they demand more decision making power in the Consejo and ring fencing of the commercialisation of bulk wines, Fedejerez president, Evaristo Babé, underlined that their claim to represent Manzanilla is “completely false” given that their sales represent a minimal percentage of total Manzanilla sales. He insisted on the need to avoid the “manipulation” on the part of the rebels, who account for barely 20% of Manzanilla sales, and thus could not be said to represent its interests.

The rebels have initiated a campaign to collect signatures of support which is seen as one more step by them in the open conflict to get recognition for BIB, a container prohibited by the DO. At the end of summer at a full Consejo meeting, Fedejerez proposed that 100% of DO wine be bottled and bulk sales banned, with the possible exception of small garrafas for domestic use. The rebels, on the other hand want to see BIB as the principal means of supply to bars, restaurants and despachos. Fedejerez will revive its proposal at forthcoming Consejo plenaries at which the rebels are seeking equality or if that is not possible, an independent plenary. Babé insists on getting rid of BIB to protect the quality of wine sold in bars and restaurants and create better value. “Things need to change; it can’t go on like this” he said.

A replica of the first ship to circumnavigate the globe is berthed at Bonanza near Sanlúcar. The Nao Victoria was the only survivor of five ships which set out from Sanlúcar in 1519, under the command of Ferdinand Magellan, to find a new spice route. After many vicissitudes, Victoria returned in 1522 captained by Juan Sebastian Elcano. Big celebrations are planned for 2019, the 500th anniversary. The ship can be seen for a week starting today, and there will be an exhibition on board. For further information contact

I have been on board this ship, and wondered how such a small ship could possibly circumnavigate the globe. It is a real testament to the sailors and their courage. They did have plenty of Sherry with them, so maybe that's how!

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